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  • Drill rod edumacation

    Newbie questions about drill rod:

    I'm going to order a small assortment (1/16" - 5/8")of drill rod to go "in stock" for, as yet, unknown future projects....like small axles, pivot pins, dowels, jigs, dial test adapters, maybe a model engine crankshaft, etc. Enco shows A2, O1 and W1 in their catalog. Are all 3 machinable with HSS tooling in their un-hardened state? Or just O1. I'm leaning towards O1 as my 1st purchase but I'd love to hear some of yuse guys' thoughts on the subject.

    Thanks!
    Milton

    "Accuracy is the sum total of your compensating mistakes."

    "The thing I hate about an argument is that it always interrupts a discussion." G. K. Chesterton

  • #2
    I suggest O-1. it's more forgiving and machines a little better. Besides, I stock drill rod up to 1 1/4". If it's all O-1 there's never any confusion when it comes time to heat treat something made from a remnent I forgot to mark with the color code.

    [This message has been edited by Forrest Addy (edited 07-13-2004).]

    Comment


    • #3
      Get some of all.

      A1 is most expensive, useful for items where warpage during heat treatment is a big problem. If you have to use end product straight from heat treatment without grinding to finished size pick A1. Or for a cutting tool that can be ground after hardening, will probably give better wear than O1.

      O1 makes a good tough part when properly heat treated. If the end product can be ground after hardening, or if scale will not affect the final product, O1 is a good choice.

      W1 is the cheapest and the best for use in an unhardened state because it will wear less than other unhardened drill rods. It will also make a decent cutting tool when hardened. It is also easier to mess up the hardening of W1 because of the violence of water quenching.

      So gets lots of W1 in a wide range of sizes, some O1 in 5 or six sizes from 1/4 to 1 or 2 inch diameter depending of the size of your normal projects, and 2 or 3 pieces of A1 if you want to grind a few reamers or such.

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      • #4
        Thanks gentlemen! Can I turn W1 rod on my lathe with regular HSS tools?
        Milton

        "Accuracy is the sum total of your compensating mistakes."

        "The thing I hate about an argument is that it always interrupts a discussion." G. K. Chesterton

        Comment


        • #5
          W-1 is your basic high-carbon steel. I use it for everything, unless there's a compelling reason not to.

          One would want to go to O-1 or A-2 if warping or cracking during hardening turned out to be a problem with W-1.

          If you want to get just one type, O-1 would probably be a good compromise if you see a lot of hardening/tempering in your future. If you're mostly going to use it unhardened, get the W-1 cheap stuff.

          I wouldn't call any of them "free machining," but they are all machiniable, especially if you take the time to get a wicked sharp edge on your toolbit. Cutting oil helps, too.

          Incidentally, you may want to pick up some "KeepBryte Anti-Scale Compound." Used when hardening a part, it really does keep the part from scaling to an amazing degree.
          ----------
          Try to make a living, not a killing. -- Utah Phillips
          Don't believe everything you know. -- Bumper sticker
          Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects. -- Will Rogers
          There are lots of people who mistake their imagination for their memory. - Josh Billings
          Law of Logical Argument - Anything is possible if you don't know what you are talking about.
          Don't own anything you have to feed or paint. - Hood River Blackie

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          • #6
            The O-6 I bought, while very expensive, is very free machining. It cuts almost like 7075 aluminum. That is a property unique to this specific alloy caused by free graphite at the grain boundaries.
            Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here

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            • #7
              Yes, you can turn W-1 with HSS.
              I completely concur with ulav8r and SGW. I use lots of W-1, a fair amount of O-1, and only buy A series when specifically required (rarely).

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              • #8
                <font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by SGW:
                Incidentally, you may want to pick up some "KeepBryte Anti-Scale Compound." Used when hardening a part, it really does keep the part from scaling to an amazing degree.</font>
                I've always used 20 mule team borax desolved in water. Does KeepBryte work better?

                Richard Chase
                Gray, Maine

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                • #9
                  Hmmm...never tried borax, except as a brazing flux!

                  Next time I'm heat-treating something I'll give it a try for anti-scaling. Doesn't it melt and vaporize before you get the part to critical quenching temperature though?


                  ----------
                  Try to make a living, not a killing. -- Utah Phillips
                  Don't believe everything you know. -- Bumper sticker
                  Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects. -- Will Rogers
                  There are lots of people who mistake their imagination for their memory. - Josh Billings
                  Law of Logical Argument - Anything is possible if you don't know what you are talking about.
                  Don't own anything you have to feed or paint. - Hood River Blackie

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    <font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by SGW:
                    Doesn't it melt and vaporize before you get the part to critical quenching temperature though?
                    </font>
                    It has worked well for me, just dissolve as much as you can in water, stir the water with the part you are going to harden and start heating. The water vaporizes and leaves the part coated with the borax. It will bubble and flake some and the part still burns black but no pitting of the surface. Cleans up quite nicely.

                    Richard Chase
                    Gray, Maine


                    [This message has been edited by Alaric (edited 07-13-2004).]

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Leave it to a Mainer to find the cheap way! (Hey, I come from a long line of them myself....)
                      ----------
                      Try to make a living, not a killing. -- Utah Phillips
                      Don't believe everything you know. -- Bumper sticker
                      Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects. -- Will Rogers
                      There are lots of people who mistake their imagination for their memory. - Josh Billings
                      Law of Logical Argument - Anything is possible if you don't know what you are talking about.
                      Don't own anything you have to feed or paint. - Hood River Blackie

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        O-o-o-h yeah....I like cheap too, and I'm from down south! Must be them Scottish genes I got somehow, way back yonder.

                        ps: Thanks again guys for the drill rod edumacation.
                        Milton

                        "Accuracy is the sum total of your compensating mistakes."

                        "The thing I hate about an argument is that it always interrupts a discussion." G. K. Chesterton

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          A very good idea, to obtain a stock of drill rod. I use it all the time for tool, model engine, and clock making. I use W1 and watter harden.

                          Good tip about the borax too; I use it, but have just been wetting the part and dipping it into the borax. Using a solution sounds like a better way to go.

                          I find that W1 machines easily, HSS is fine.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Yes to all above,I have used Ivory soap to control scaling,it contains a lot of talc I think.

                            You might also consider some metric sizes,I keep lengths of 12,15,17,20 and 25 around,theses fit real nice in the bores of common ball bearings making shop projects that much easier.
                            I just need one more tool,just one!

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                            • #15
                              Evan, who did you order the o-6 from? KBC?

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